There is a New Bride on the Block…..and she’s socially conscious!

21 Dec

Every year Martha Stewart, Today’s Bride, The Knot and other big names in the Wedding World come out with endless Top 10 Trends lists about The Dress, the reception, sizes of weddings, engagement rings etc.  These lists are ever-changing and often exhausting to try and keep up with.  However, there has been a trend that has seemed to stick around for quite a few seasons: The Socially conscious Bride and Groom.

The socially and environmentally friendly trend has appeared in nearly every aspect of the bride and grooms wedding: invitations made on recycled paper, e-invites to avoid using paper, gently used wedding gowns, wedding gowns made out of eco friendly materials, the wedding party taking public transportation instead of cars and having the wedding and reception at the same accessible site so there is less driving time (and therefore less cars on the road) for the guests, donate leftover reception food to the homeless….the list could go on and on…

I have also seen many couples forgo actual wedding gifts and gift registries and instead ask their guests to make a donation to Canadian Cancer Society, to Alzheimer’s Society, to bring toys and books to donate to underprivileged children (City Kidz), raise money for the couple’s old high school or local children’s sports team.  And even if they are not completely omitting the gift registry they are certainly incorporating an altruistic perspective to their wedding.

While I certainly applaud the socially conscious bride; I at first wondered why she goes to such lengths on her special day to pay attention other people, places and causes.  I mean, look at the Bridezilla!  While her actions live up to her Godzilla namesake, she seems to waltz away smelling like roses, lookin’ beautiful and loaded down with wedding present loot.  However after a few episodes of Bridezillas, I soon realized this was not the type of wedding I would want.  I think it is actually the socially conscious bride and groom that end up having the day that is most “about them” because:

  • Puts the focus on things that are really important to the bride and groom: Instead of the focus being on material items, it is on the beliefs, causes, philosophies, and community that the bride and groom really care about.  What could be more special than supporting and celebrating what truly represents that couple and what they hope to help and create?   The cause that the couple decide to support may also be in memory of a loved one that sadly cannot attend the wedding, but through that cause, their spirit is represented and honoured at the wedding
  • The Socially Conscious Couple creates the perfect “marriage” between the wedding and the Marriage(pun, of course, intended) In the past, we have seen a huge trend of brides-to-be being focused on their wedding day, with the entire marriage being an afterthought.  The socially conscious couple appears to view the wedding day as the first day of the rest of their lives life as a married couple. They publically declare to their friends and families how they are choosing to live their lives as husband and wife by showing people what they care about and that they want the community they are getting married in to be a healthy, happy and prosperous one for their own lives and for the families they will be starting together.

So I encourage brides and grooms to incorporate the causes and charities that they are passionate about or would like to become passionate about in their wedding.  It is a simple way to make your wedding a rewarding, positive experience that truly represents who you are as a couple.  It also allows your wedding to leave a memorable impact on your community and your world…not just in your photo album.  To get your wedding planning started on the altruistic track, the Hamilton-Halton Spring Wedding Show 2010 is running a food drive in support ofHamilton Food Share in hopes to raise 6,000 canned goods for the families and children in the Hamilton area. Please bring your canned goods with you to the show at the Hamilton Convention Centre on January 9 and 10, 2010.  11am-5pm each day.  Even if you can’t attend, we still welcome donations!

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